21.05.2008 23 °C
Holee sheet! Right now we're in Arequipa, Peru. So much has happened recently that we just don't have a scooby where to start (Only realised that between Bangkok, Thailand and La Paz, Bolivia, we crossed 13 time zones in 11 days! Lost 24 hours over International Date-Line, so now we're behind GMT for the first time).
Just finished 53km of the Inca pilgrimage trail (Highest pass 4200m above sea-level. In context, the highest British peak is Mt. Snowdon at a piffling 1200m). Explored the pristine 'lost' Incan city of Macchu Picchu amongst Hummingbirds and Butterflies (Missed by the Spanish conquistadors, now full of fat, loud Americans). Watched Andean condors glide on thermals above the worlds second deepest canyon, Colca (Which absolutely dwarfs what should now surely be renamed the 'Not Quite Grand Canyon' in the ol' U S of A. By the way, the deepest is also in Peru, 90km from Colca). Poked around some pre-Incan tombs (and found some pre-Incan pottery!) at Chivay. Home-stayed with Quechua speaking villagers on Isla de Amantani, Lake Titicaca (the worlds highest fresh-water lake). Played a footy match at over 4000m above sea-level. Danced the night away at an 'Inca-theque', in full traditional dress! Huffed and puffed our way around the world's highest capital city, La Paz. Strolled amongst the Maoi statues on Rapa Nui (Easter Island)...
And we still have to fly above the mysterious Nazca Lines, see mummified Incan human sacrifices, eat chevice (marinaded raw Kingfish) and guinae pig (already tried the Alpaca), drink pisco sours in Pisco, sand-board on the Pacific coast...and all just before we leave Peru! We're sure you can now understand our predicament with the blog. Too much mayhem. Too. Many. Pics.
So we promise once we get settled in Buenos Aires, Argentina, (Presently apartment hunting, thinking of staying there for at least a month - you know, learn the Tango, work on our (dreadful) Spanish) we will take a time out and properly update this place. We need to get our asses up to Lima for a flight on the 30th, so for now it's chao from us.
All our Love,
PS: Watched the Champions League final here last night. Couldn't believe it. F**cking Man U wing it again! Laughed our asses off at that twat Ronaldo. Tool! Gavin, tell me your not polluting the little J man's mind with this Manc lot? He He...
Okay, some pics:
Canned Fanny fish. Cuzco, Peru. Worth the whole trip...
Here, Jesus! Get off them snouts big man!
Descending on the world's highest capital city La Paz, Bolivia. Landing strip top-middle, below Andes. By the way, flying from sea-level, directly up to 4000m not a good idea. Walked straight off the plane into some quality altitude sickness. Appearing intoxicated whilst trying to get through immigration in a major cocaine producing country not advised. Trust us.
Coca leaves. Break off some of the chalk-like stone (alkaline), wrap about ten leaves around it, and chew. You'll be up the Andes in no time! Seriously, good for altitude sickness and digestion. Bad for drug tests.
Andean Condor (world's second largest bird) gliding on thermals above Colca canyon, Peru. In fact we should say Condors, as there was a family of three in that pic. Couldn't believe our luck!
Macchu Picchu. Pronounced 'Ma-choo Pitch-oo'. Not 'Pee-choo', as this translates as cock.
Us, with our guides Victor (l) and Henry (r), at 4200m above sea-level. Deadwoman's pass to be exact. (We actually have broke 5000m since this trek.)
Welcome to Peru! Bolivian border crossing. And a damn persistent shoeshine-boy!
Us in traditional hats on Isla de Amantani. Our new 'parents' (Hepolito and Deomicia) made us wear them so they could recognise us, as all us whiteys look the same.
Sarah and her new 'pop' Hepolito throwing shapes at the Incatheque. To steal some Jack Kerouac, out side that night was just the most magnificent firmament. Probably close to the only truly profound moment of our lil ol' trip - you could see the Milky Way!
And previously the same night, a kick ass storm closing in damn quick on the island, with big ass lightning strikes hitting Titicaca.
Amantani, Sarah playing football. With so little oxygen at this altitude (well over 4000m) you can understand how we got completely hammered by some local ten year olds!
Our new 'Mama' Deomicia, with Sarah in traditional dress.
Andean village. Alpacas, Llamas and only a local cackling away on her mobile!
Cuzco backstreets. Dog people watching.
Cuzco backtreets, pizza wagon.
La Paz, Bolivia. Side street. Women wearing bowler hats still taking some getting used to!
Floating islands of the Uros people, lake Titicaca.
Lake Titicaca. Pedal-boats. Who's taking the one on the right then?
Sunrise over the Andes. 6am and full moon still visible, the sun starting to paint it's rojo gamut on the mountains.
The Rapa Nui (Easter Island) RTW route-map we prepared (Blue Peter stylee) earlier.
Rapa Nui. Hand-drawn map.
Us at Tongariki, Rapa Nui. Thanks Francince for the pic.
Tongariki. 15 Maoi statues. The one in foreground the only one of two that face out to sea (though arguable that they all actually do).
Rapa Nui. Mighty Pacific ocean.
All for now folks.
- Apologies for slackness of this post (and not developing on the Rapa Nui section). As stated we've been kind of caught on the hoof.